How Big Data Is Changing The Film Industry

How Big Data Is Changing The Film Industry

How Big Data is Changing the Film Industry

The film industry is huge, generating in excess of $520 billion revenue in the USA in 2013.

rating-vs-year

Imagine if this behemoth of the entertainment world could be further refined by taking account of consumers’ preferences, viewing habits and cultural interests?

Big data makes this refinement possible. As consumers publish information and provide a constant stream of feedback on Twitter, Facebook, Google Plus and personal blogs, studios now have almost limitless information about what genres prosper, which actors are favoured, how films are marketed, and which adverts should appear where.

Consumer Driven Data

An interesting example is that of the ‘Internet Movie Database’ (IMDb). Boasting a database over more than 2.5 million films and 50 million users, the site enables anybody to contribute new material, edit existing entries, and most importantly, rate any film on a scale of 1 to 10. This data can then be extrapolated into charts, tables and graphs about broad categories (favoured genres, directors, actors and storylines) to the extremely specific (most overrated films in Ottawa with a PG certificate).

When combined with other datasets such as aggregate Google search queries, studios can predict how well their films will perform ahead of time – gaining insight into whether an idea is likely to fly to the top of the box office charts or crash to the bottom of the movie scrapheap. Big data used in this way could ultimately put an end to the much fabled ‘movie flop’, preventing recent box-office disasters such as ‘The Lone Ranger’.

Marketing and Release

Films and marketing campaigns can tailor-made for individual geographic locations and their performance can be monitored. There is research that suggests there is a direct correlation between the amount of ‘likes’ a film receives on Facebook, and its likelihood of selling out at a cinema showing. This allows studios to work harder on marketing drives and word-of-mouth campaigns for films that have the least receptive reactions.

It is now possible for early reactions in Asia to determine the strategies that will be implemented in America just hours later, with releases, adverts, and word of mouth controlled in different countries at the studios discretion.

In a Tribeca Talks Industry panel discussion, the example of ‘2016: Obama’s America’ was used to illustrate the point, with the film using a steady release based on localised political trends to achieve a much higher level of success than would have been possible with a standard nationwide or limited release.

Caution

Not all of the impacts of big data are necessarily positive. With such readily available information about preferences and passions of cinema-goers, there is a danger that the quality and diversification of films starts to suffer. Directors and studios are far less likely to risk money and prestige on an untested and unproven formula, instead erring on the side of caution and producing tried and tested content.

As with all things, the data also requires skilled analysis to prevent misleading interpretations. To again use the example of IMDb, several commentators believe the data to be flawed for many reasons. For example, the website maintains its own ‘Top 250’ list, yet only non-documentary theatrical releases running at least forty-five minutes with over 25,000 ratings are considered, and submitted ratings are filtered and sorted in various ways in order to produce a weighted mean that is displayed for each film.

Ultimately, studios who don’t hire people who can manage data sets and then use strong programming and maths skills to extract findings that tell a story may just find themselves making the next Waterworld!

How do you think big data can change the world of cinema? Let us know in the comments below.

By Daniel Price

(Image Source: Bugra)

About Daniel Price

Daniel is a Manchester-born UK native who has abandoned cold and wet Northern Europe and currently lives on the Caribbean coast of Mexico. A former Financial Consultant, he now balances his time between writing articles for several industry-leading tech (CloudTweaks.com & MakeUseOf.com), sports, and travel sites and looking after his three dogs.

Find out more
View All Articles

Sorry, comments are closed for this post.

Comic
In The Fast Lane: Connected Car Hacking A Big Risk

In The Fast Lane: Connected Car Hacking A Big Risk

Connected Car Hacking Researchers and cybersecurity experts working hard to keep hackers out of the driver’s seat. Modern transportation has come a million miles, and most all of today’s vehicles are controlled entirely by digital technology. Millions of drivers are not aware that of the many devices in their digital arsenal, the most complex of…

Having Your Cybersecurity And Eating It Too

Having Your Cybersecurity And Eating It Too

The Catch 22 The very same year Marc Andreessen famously said that software was eating the world, the Chief Information Officer of the United States was announcing a major Cloud First goal. That was 2011. Five years later, as both the private and public sectors continue to adopt cloud-based software services, we’re interested in this…

Building a Data Security Strategy – More Important Than Ever

Building a Data Security Strategy – More Important Than Ever

Data Security Strategy Article sponsored by SAS Software and Big Data Forum Security and privacy have been an integral concern of the IT industry since its very inception, but as it expands through web-based, mobile, and cloud-based applications, access to data is magnified as are the threats of illicit penetration. As enterprises manage vast quantities…

Pitney Bowes Selects Aria Systems for Billing on the New Commerce Cloud

Pitney Bowes Selects Aria Systems for Billing on the New Commerce Cloud

Top-Ranked Cloud Billing Company Enables Greater Speed and Frictionless Billing for Unparalleled Customer Experience San Francisco, CA – August 23, 2016 – Aria Systems, which helps enterprises grow subscription and usage-based revenue, today announced that Pitney Bowes has selected Aria’s cloud-based monetization platform as the key billing and monetization component of their new Commerce Cloud…

The Golden Age of Wearable Technology

The Golden Age of Wearable Technology

The Golden Age One of the biggest fads in the technology sector right now is wearable tech. From Smartwatches that let you check your emails, chat with friends and search the web, to fitness accessories that monitor your heart rate and your sleep patterns, this is truly the Golden Age of wearable technology. But some…

The Cancer Moonshot: Collaboration Is Key

The Cancer Moonshot: Collaboration Is Key

Cancer Moonshot In his final State of the Union address in January 2016, President Obama announced a new American “moonshot” effort: finding a cure for cancer. The term “moonshot” comes from one of America’s greatest achievements, the moon landing. If the scientific community can achieve that kind of feat, then surely it can rally around…

The Fully Aware, Hybrid-Cloud Approach

The Fully Aware, Hybrid-Cloud Approach

Hybrid-Cloud Approach For over 20 years, organizations have been attempting to secure their networks and protect their data. However, have any of their efforts really improved security? Today we hear journalists and industry experts talk about the erosion of the perimeter. Some say it’s squishy, others say it’s spongy, and yet another claims it crunchy.…

Four Recurring Revenue Imperatives

Four Recurring Revenue Imperatives

Revenue Imperatives “Follow the money” is always a good piece of advice, but in today’s recurring revenue-driven market, “follow the customer” may be more powerful. Two recurring revenue imperatives highlight the importance of responding to, and cherishing customer interactions. Technology and competitive advantage influence the final two. If you’re part of the movement towards recurring…

The Rise Of BI Data And How To Use It Effectively

The Rise Of BI Data And How To Use It Effectively

The Rise of BI Data Every few years, a new concept or technological development is introduced that drastically improves the business world as a whole. In 1983, the first commercially handheld mobile phone debuted and provided workers with an unprecedented amount of availability, leading to more productivity and profits. More recently, the Cloud has taken…

Are CEO’s Missing Out On Big Data’s Big Picture?

Are CEO’s Missing Out On Big Data’s Big Picture?

Big Data’s Big Picture Big data allows marketing and production strategists to see where their efforts are succeeding and where they need some work. With big data analytics, every move you make for your company can be backed by data and analytics. While every business venture involves some level of risk, with big data, that risk…

The Storytelling Machine: Big Content and Big Data

The Storytelling Machine: Big Content and Big Data

Bridging The Gap Between Big Content and Big Data Advances in cloud computing, along with the big data movement, have transformed the business IT landscape. Leveraging the cloud, companies are now afforded on demand capacity and mobile accessibility to their business-critical systems and information. At the same time, the amount of structured and unstructured data…

Do Small Businesses Need Cloud Storage Service?

Do Small Businesses Need Cloud Storage Service?

Cloud Storage Services Not using cloud storage for your business yet? Cloud storage provides small businesses like yours with several advantages. Start using one now and look forward to the following benefits: Easy back-up of files According to Practicalecommerce, it provides small businesses with a way to back up their documents and files. No need…

10 Trending US Cities For Tech Jobs And Startups

10 Trending US Cities For Tech Jobs And Startups

10 Trending US Cities For Tech Jobs And Startups Traditionally actors headed for Hollywood while techies made a beeline for Silicon Valley. But times are changing, and with technological job opportunities expanding (Infographic), new hotspots are emerging that offer fantastic opportunities for tech jobs and startup companies in the industry. ZipRecruiter, an online recruitment and job…

Cloud Infographic – Guide To Small Business Cloud Computing

Cloud Infographic – Guide To Small Business Cloud Computing

Small Business Cloud Computing Trepidation is inherently attached to anything that involves change and especially if it involves new technologies. SMBs are incredibly vulnerable to this fear and rightfully so. The wrong security breach can incapacitate a small startup for good whereas larger enterprises can reboot their operations due to the financial stability of shareholders. Gordon Tan contributed an…

The Big Data Movement Gets Bigger

The Big Data Movement Gets Bigger

The Big Data Movement In recent years, Big Data and Cloud relations have been growing steadily. And while there have been many questions raised around how best to use the information being gathered, there is no question that there is a real future between the two. The growing importance of Big Data Scientists and the…

Cloud Infographic – The Data Scientist

Cloud Infographic – The Data Scientist

Data Scientist Report The amount of data in our world has been exploding in recent years. Managing big data has become an integral part of many businesses, generating billions of dollars of competitive innovations, productivity and job growth. Forecasting where the big data industry is going has become vital to corporate strategy. Enter the Data…